The day arrived with the sun dancing around the clouds so I decided it was a good opportunity to hike a portion of the D&L Trail near Slatington, PA. The trail follows the Delaware and Lehigh Canal routes from Whitehaven, PA to Bristol, PA . The canals and later railroads moved iron, coal, slate, cement and zinc along the rivers to destinations which included New York and Philadelphia.
This is just a guess but slate may have been mined in SLAT(E)ington just as cement was a major manufacturing focus in Cementon. I’m just guessing, of course.
Today’s hike began at the Lehigh Gap Nature Center. The Center was established by a friend of mine who has been attempting to re-foliate the mountain which was denuded by what came out of the stacks at the New Jersey Zinc Plant in near-by Palmerton. Progress is slow but when you drive through The Lehigh Gap (The Gap) on Route 248 your eyes feast on plenty of green where there once was only brown.
Heading south on the trail, with the Lehigh River to my left, I passed the site of the Lehigh Valley Railroad station. In its day, The Gap was a busy place with three-rail lines (Lehigh Valley, Lehigh New England and New Jersey Central) squeezing through the narrow gap.
The most fun I had on this hike was exploring the Slatington Airport. To the best of my knowledge the only human being hanging around the place was me and I hope no motion sensors were accidentally set off during my tour. Sitting beside the pilot lounge I devoured a little snack before discovering the graveyard where all the used-up airplanes go to die.
The place reminded me of the elephant grave yard in the movie ‘The Lion King’.
The view stirred me to wonder how nothing lasts forever and nothing simply stops existing. Yeah! Ponder that sentence for a minute. These photos show us how even rusting out airplane fuselages are being changed by weather and time to be returned to the earth which produced the materials contained in the carcasses years ago. This thought re-enforced my belief that there is something more for me to experience when this earthly life ends. Nothing in creation simply stops existing which means the creation is eternal. Pretty cool thought isn’t it?
I wonder what might be discovered the next time I take a hike!